Between the many real estate ad sites, your contact requests and the scheduling of your visits, doing real estate research for a first purchase is organized so as not to be lost in front of all this information. Sutton Quebec gives you some tips to organize yourself well and not miss out on the property of your dreams.
How to succeed in your real estate search?
You have decided to buy a house or an apartment for the first time and you have a lot of questions. One in particular… where to start?
In reality, several steps will be intertwined: finding ads, contact the real estate broker and schedule visits. In the meantime, your thinking will be put to the test: does the ad meet my criteria, what questions to ask the broker, do I trigger a visit, does the property meet my expectations, what information am I missing, etc.
All this is of course additional to a good dose of stress due to your first purchase ;)
Buying a property is therefore a complex process before you have even found the one you want. The key to success for a successful property search is therefore organization!
Before starting your research, have you clearly defined your purchasing criteria? In general terms: what are your needs, your desires, your crippling criteria and the compromises you are ready to make? If these questions have not yet been answered, go to our article: How to define your real estate purchase criteria?
Real estate ad sites
On which sites to search for houses or apartments?
There are hundreds of real estate listing sites. In order not to get lost in this mass but also to save time, it is important not to “wander” on all the sites that you will find. You risk wasting hours on the web without being productive and ending up with the same ads.
Prefer to select a few sites, 3 or 4 maximum, on which you will be pro-active. Among the best known, you will find the indispensable Centris.ca which lists all the listings of real estate brokers in Quebec!
Be methodical so you don't let any ads pass you by. Use the search engines of the sites you have chosen. First, filter using your most ideal purchasing criteria, then do a second search, removing any compromise criteria.
Read an ad
Carefully inspect the information available on the ad. First of all, does the property meet your criteria, what information are you missing?
Some sites give you the option of creating your account to save real estate listings. You can also maintain your own dashboard, for example in Excel or Google Sheets. This method will allow you to know exactly where you are at every step. You can thus add useful columns such as the district, the area, the link of the advertisement, the contact details of the broker and above all a comment column.
Most of the work is the first research because you discover all the ads available on the real estate market.
Afterwards, you will retrieve the news feed. The trick is to create email alerts for yourself. Thus, as soon as a new ad matching your criteria is posted, an email will be sent to you. You gain responsiveness in a tense market where houses and apartments sell out very quickly.
Contact the real estate broker
You are seduced by one or certainly several ads and you decide to take the next step: contact the listing real estate broker. Before that, prepare your questions.
Questions to ask
Simply go back to your list of criteria and check the important information you are missing. Always ask for the inclusions and exclusions that are to be taken into account in your budget.
In all cases, our brokers are used to and will know how to guide you. Don't be surprised, they might ask you more questions than you ask ;) Part of their job is to make the connection between what you are looking for and the listing concerned.
Note, on your dashboard, if you had the broker on the phone or by email, if you left him a message, the date, the information given such as the number of parking spaces, the proximity of public transport, the area habitable, etc. All this is important because you will accumulate a certain amount of data… relieve this mental load by taking notes.
Once you get to this point, it will be easier for you to find your way around because you will have gone through a complex funnel. The visit is a good step in the research process, it is like an intermediate objective very close to the final objective of the purchase. Once again, prepare well for your visit.
Don't hesitate at this particular time to ask your broker for a virtual tour first.
The goal is not to accumulate visits because sometimes it only takes one or two to find the property of your dreams. The more organized you are in your method of real estate research, the more likely you will be able to find… Rectification, it will not be luck but simply the result of your work!
The buyer brokerage contract: an increasingly widespread solution
The buyer's brokerage contract or purchase brokerage contract allows you to put your purchase project in the hands of a real estate broker. He will take care of your research according to the criteria you have given him.
This contract is present to frame your request and the broker's work. He will be your sole intermediary and you will arrive directly at the visits stage.
This increasingly popular method allows you to rely on a professional in the sector who can support and advise you, but also to go off track to seize great opportunities, not yet present on the market!